common-spine-conditions

Here's a Quick Way to Identify the Most Common Spine Conditions

Kris E. Radcliff, M.D. January 19th, 2017

No one wants to play the guessing game. If you're suffering from back or neck pain, it's important to be aware of these common spine conditions and how they may be affecting you.

For decades, Rothman Institute physicians have been treating patients with a variety of spinal injuries and diseases. There are numerous common spine conditions that tend to frequently impact our patients' quality of life.

A Brief Overview of Spine Anatomy

In and around the spine, strong bones, cushioning cartilage, flexible ligaments and large muscles allow the body to support the head, stand upright, bend forward and backward, and twist from side to side.

Viewed from the side, the spine has a natural "S" shaped curve. Running through the center of the vertebral column is the spinal cord, protected and contained by the spine itself. Without the spine, the cord would be unable to properly connect nerves to the brain, triggering and facilitating all of the essential communication that lets the body know if, when and how to move.

All About Spinal Conditions

Because the spine is so centrally connected to all other parts of the body, a problem with the spine can produce a variety of symptoms and impact a patient's ability to function on a variety of levels.

Categories:

Common spine conditions fall into two categories:

  1. Wear and tear conditions

  2. Acute injuries

Causes:

Certain sports, such as golf, volleyball and gymnastics, are more likely to cause back pain, but problems with the spine can occur over time from something as simple as a poor sleeping position or performing a repetitive motion at work. Accidents, falls, and lifting and twisting are often the culprits of sudden spine injuries.

Spine problems can occur in any of the following ways:

  • Irritation of the large nerve roots that go to the legs and arms

  • Pinching of the smaller nerves that extend out from the vertebrae

  • Straining of the large back muscles

  • Injury to the actual bones or ligaments in or around the spine

The Most Common Spine Conditions

Your back or neck pain may be the result of one of the following common spine conditions. This list is certainly not exhaustive, but it represents some of the most frequent reasons for visits to primary care physicians, and then ultimately, to orthopaedic specialists.

  • Herniated Cervical Disc

  • Herniated Lumbar Disc

  • Spinal Cord Injuries

  • Spondylosis

  • Sciatica

  • Spinal Infections

  • Spinal Osteoarthritis (Spondylosis)

  • Spinal Stenosis

  • Scoliosis and Spinal Deformities

  • Spinal Tumors

  • Whiplash

If you believe you may be suffering from one of the above mentioned conditions, you're probably asking, "Should I see a spine physician?" We can help answer that question. Visit us here or contact us at 1-800-321-9999, and we'll answer your questions and get you set up to see a specialist who can help address your particular problem.

Spine Series - Blog 1: Could I Have a Spine Condition? Here's How You Know...

Common Spine Conditions

How Do I Know if I Have a Spine Condition?

Should I See a Spine Physician?

Spine Series - Blog 2: Have You Tried These Treatments for Spine Conditions?

Nonsurgical Spine Treatment

Best Spine Physician

Spine Series - Blog 3: Answering the Big Question: Do I Need Spinal Surgery?

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